Skip to comments.Virginia Loses 1st Newspaper (Official Dinosaur Media WakeŽ)
Posted on 06/02/2009 5:31:05 AM PDT by abb
The Clarke Courier was a small newspaper for a small place. Its circulation was but 2,240, but in a county of just 14,000 people, that meant that if you wanted to know what was going on in Clarke, you had better check the Courier.
No more. The Courier last week became Virginia's first paid circulation newspaper to die in the epidemic of closings, layoffs and cutbacks that are part of the dismantling of the American news infrastructure. It won't be the last.
More than 10,000 journalism jobs have disappeared from U.S. newspapers so far this year, a pittance compared to what the automobile industry is going through, but a huge excision from the country's newsgathering and reporting capabilities. And in communities such as Clarke--located just beyond the edge of sprawl west of Loudoun County (Routes 7 and 50 go through it)--
The paper was just sold to a new owner last year. But the publisher of the Winchester Star was unable to save the Courier. The problem was not circulation or readership--they held steady, as they have for most community weeklies. After all, local news is one commodity that is still available primarily from newspapers--the wire services and aggregators (YahooNews, Google News, etc.) that have turned national and foreign news into a nameless, brandless stream of free, raw data don't handle local news. But ad revenue, the lifeblood of journalism, dried up, both because of the recession and because of the massive shift of advertisers' dollars, interest and energy from the old standby of print papers to a hodgepodge of other outlets, both online and not (mostly to nowhere, actually--this is the great unwritten story of the dismantling of the news industry, the concomitant decline of the advertising and public relations businesses).
(Excerpt) Read more at voices.washingtonpost.com ...
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I don’t know about this paper and the truth is, I never read it and won’t miss it but the trend is disturbing. It’s the smaller pubs with local appeal that will feel the pain of the public distrust and hard economic times, not the Slimes and ComPost. Small town drivers, small town pressmen and shop helpers, layout specialists, ad salespeople.. It’s these people that are hurt by the corruption rampant in the print media.
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My subscription for our local paper ran out last week and I’m not renewing it. It is getting more liberal and constantly pushes for additional spending and tax increases. My city is about 40,000 people but they think they are Chicago or New York.
News is the garbage you put in a paper so people will pick it up and look at the ads.... and they paid the price.
The Slimes and the ComPost are undergoing wrenching change, too. The NY Times company will be bankrupt within the next year or two.
Be sure and call the publisher and tell him why you are firing him. He needs to hear it from a real customer.
May she be the first of many.
“I dont know about this paper and the truth is, I never read it and wont miss it but the trend is disturbing. Its the smaller pubs with local appeal that will feel the pain of the public distrust and hard economic times...”
On target. The scummy liberals have destroyed print media in this country. Try to start up a print publication and the people and advertisers will immediately assume it’s a leftist publication.
It will take a ton of money to start up a publication and run it with few advertising dollars to prove to the local community that it’s not a clone of the leftist New York Times.
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This conservative paper couldn’t make it.
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By Robert Moran
INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The Bulletin, a Philadelphia newspaper that developed a loyal following for being a strident conservative voice in the region, folded this afternoon, employees confirmed.
That’s a good idea! I will do that.
I had subscribed for over 30 years but I’ve had enough.
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From your lips quisling Fisher, from your lips.
"But ad revenue, the lifeblood of journalism, dried up, both because of the recession and because of the massive shift of advertisers' dollars, interest and energy from the old standby of print papers to a hodgepodge of other outlets, both online and not (mostly to nowhere, actually--this is the great unwritten story of the dismantling of the news industry, the concomitant decline of the advertising and public relations businesses)."
Keep telling yourself that quisling Fisher, keep telling yourself that. :^)
All the hardware needed for a new start up can be purchased at a bankruptcy auction for pennies on the dollar.
As for content?
Content speaks for itself.
Any individual(s) seeking to bring a right-wing POV to print obviously must have a plan and unfortunately the youngsters know not the meaning of "conservatism
Considering the state of the GOP I'm not sure what they'd say or where they'd start.
A startup printer should have to go after both left *&* right with hammer & tong under the circumstances.
Both right-wingers & leftists *love* being told how correct their way is; especially, when [it] isn't.
Honesty's a tough sell regardless the audience, these days.
The Liberal-Socialist quisling mediots won by default since there really isn't much choice anymore, is there.
Always been that way. What the other side is selling - Something for Nothing - has always been a workable scam.
Local newspapers serve a valuable need in communities. Schools, municipal items, local sports, community calender, etc. Too bad that the dollars and cents don’t work out.
Publishing in red ink
Cost is about $350K in salary/employment costs. Press run of maybe 10,000 is going to run you another $80K a year. Distribution is another $20K a year then you have coin operated boxes and stands to deal with.
Rent and utils are another $2,500 a year then you have supplies that cost another $25K per year minimum.
That's easily half a million a year that you have to cover. You might get lucky and score a good classified section that brings in $2K per week but you have to sell $8K plus per week in display ads which means 40 ads per week paying $200 a shot.
Having seen this model up close close to 20 years ago it's too hard of a business to work out.
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“It is very antiquated to think that people are opening up the Sunday paper and looking for real estate. It just doesn’t happen anymore,” she said. “The behavior has changed. It’s been a major shift in behavior, and I don’t see that going back at all. I don’t think that people are not necessarily going to read newspaper, but I don’t think they’ll be looking for real estate in newspapers.”
Nearly nine in 10 homebuyers used the internet as an information source, and one in three found a home on the internet, according to 2008 data from the National Association of Realtors. Newer, growing “aggregate” sites such as Zillow and Trulia — which pull together listings from a variety of brokerage firms, in addition to providing other services — have made it easier to find more property information online. All this has catalyzed marketing activity for real-estate companies.
You're correct, nothing really *new* going on. Should've said, "these days more than ever and only because the information highways are many more today.
"What the other side is selling - Something for Nothing - has always been a workable scam."
Used to work.
But I'd like to believe [that] too is in a state of flux right *now*.
The closing rags and/or tanking revenues of those hanging on prove something beyond what the industry's lice claim.
We shall all see, soon enough.
Buggers had better have another mode in mind for delivering their bullcocka. The preferred one's either dead or quickly dieing. If they're not prepared to leap off the dog soon onto another, they'll find themselves a parasite trapped on a dead host.
~Real bummer, man. :o)
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In any times to do what a newspaper's capable of, ie, influence etc?
As I said any person or persons would want is a genuine, solid business plan. One which directly involves the biggest employers (retailers, manufacturer's etc) in the community for base support in the way of ad dollars. Add "citizen reps" doing much of the legwork for stories -- not unlike "not for profits" rely a LOT on volunteers? Same or similar tack, my friend. A lot of work, yes. BIG risk, absolutely.
Deferring to your 20+ years experience OTOH, you're probably correct.
abb posted what happened to a "conservative" pub in Philly, IIRC.
It didn't last.
What part of the demise was due to incompetent management etc, can't say; but, the bottom line cannot be argued -- it's kaput.
OK then what would you suggest for delivering local information?
Is there a decent niche market to fill the vacuum left after people fled the propaganda organs?
While no one would get rich or become a Hearst? They might eek out a reasonable living while performing an occupation they respect *&* truly love: real Journalism, the way it was meant to be?
Rural area's peoples are *not* all that computer savvy, and by choice.
Most are far too busy running their farm(s), working FT occupations or simply living to sit down at a computer terminal to see what's going on.
Even if they did have the time & computer, is on-line local content even available?
I'm inclined not to think so, at least not in the area I live which features a cyber version of the exact same propaganda one gets in the rag's hard copy.
If people aren't buying hard copy rags --& they're a rapidly declining number-- will/would they *pay* for on-line content, local or otherwise? That is an enormous question, a risk that cannot be answered with "market research" per se, either.
Interesting issues lie dead ahead for the media as we know it.
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I agree. The issue at hand is the business model that allows the paper to sustain itself and I don’t see one. Not that people don’t like to read the local paper but the medium as an ad vehicle makes less and less sense.
It is almost all about the advance of technology.
I know most of us here at FRee Republic like to think the impending doom of the Drive-By Media is because of liberal bias. I don’t think that’s it.
Prior to the internet, there was no way to distribute information (or advertising) in a durable format, except for ink on paper - newspapers, magazines, sale papers, printed catalogs, etc.
Prior to the internet, there was no way to distribute moving pictures and sound, except via the phonograph, radio, tv or film.
The internet combines all those features plus interactivity, indexing, near instant recall and unlimited storage. It is the most advanced method of human communications in history.
The Drive-By’s liberal bias has certainly alienated much of their potential customer base - Grampa Dave calls it their “Dixie Chicks marketing strategy.” But if the internet hadn’t been invented, the newspaper industry would still be fat and sassy.
Didn't the NYT try this, and fail?
Yes. But looks like they may try it again by forming a ‘cartel’ and trying to copyright the English Language. I’m only being partially sarcastic, lol.
Read the postings over the past few days about the secret meeting they all had in Illinois.
I think what they may be up to is an effort to intimidate Google into paying them money.
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Yes, and I'd always thought it might be the other way around. Buying the rag drove want ads. If people don't buy papers in sufficient numbers, ad rates charged suffer.
IOW circulation trumps all after, including ad rates when all's said & done.
abb has a few interesting points to make, I'll hi-lite the ones resonating with me.
"It is almost all about the advance of technology. I know most of us here at FRee Republic like to think the impending doom of the Drive-By Media is because of liberal bias. I dont think thats it."
That's one really hard for me to get my arms around.
If you're correct? Then the *problem's* with my POV.
A POV based on the way things used to be, no longer germane.
"The Drive-Bys liberal bias has certainly alienated much of their potential customer base..."
Yes they have, and you're asserting this alienation played little --if any-- role in their imminent demise?
See my apparently antiquated POV dictated because they aliented so many, they hung themselves.
Where else would [that] best be seen in B&W, show up first for the rags?
Advertising revenues -- be it print ads or classified and directly due to shrinking circ numbers.
Don't either kind of advertiser want their product or service in front of as many eyes as possible? No eyes = no customers?
Now while the Internet provided a badly needed alternative they did so by being quicker, more efficient (for their profits) and did it all inexpensively as compared to the rags, their employees, unions, fleets of trucks etc. AND the Internet got the message in front of all kinds of people, reading at all hours finding specifically what they wanted where ever they are.
And consider Craig's List for example -- the BIG one -- rags particularly love citing for tanking classified ads don't do news.
This thing's shaping up to be a chicken & egg thing. LOL
"But if the internet hadnt been invented, the newspaper industry would still be fat and sassy."
Aye, no arguing that fact a'tall. ;^)
Interesting to contemplate what may happen after the rags have folded and the Internet the top dog.
That one's probably best left to an Alvin Toffler wannabe. :^)
Falls Church News-Press.
Reports and carries the local news but - quite avocationally - sings a far leftie liberal tune at every conceivable opportunity. Editor/owner sincerely believes the success of his small time fishwrap is due to his trumpeting of leftist sentiment, and he editorializes about this phenomenon quite regularly.
The FCNP is a swooning and unabashed Obama lover (in a town that voted 70 percent for Zer0); carries the full slate of NY Slimes syndicated idiots, with illiterate Commmie 5th-columnist Helen Thomas as an apertif; crams every single possible morsel of leftist pablum and effluvia into every weekly issue, believing the readers demand it.
The paper went markedly out of control upon Zer0’s election and then inauguration, but I think times will eventually temper this maniacal trajectory. For the moment, I sense that the editor/owner is having a bit of a mild economic hangover from the heady recent months of his Obama binge.
Did I mention his rabid hatred for all conservatives and also his obsessive disdain (previously expressed weekly in print) for the despised troika of Bushitler, Cheney, and Rumsfeld. Oh yes. Just as expected.
Generally speaking I’d say small town local newspapers like the FCNP have a bit of a niche for those who love the local news profession and are willing to work hard at it. And so long as they include enough local news and sports they might even be able to get away with publishing yoyos such as Helen Thomas, MoDo, Krugman, and the other Slimes lineup.
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In June 1836, French newspaper La Presse is the first to include paid advertising in its pages, allowing it to lower its price, extend its readership and increase its profitability and the formula was soon copied by all titles.
In February, 1922, AT&T announced its plan to establish a national radio network and sell airtime — which it called “toll broadcasting” — for programs supported by advertising. At this time AT&T believed, based on patent rights it claimed under a series of cross-licencing agreements made with various companies including General Electric and Westinghouse, that it was the only company in the U.S. allowed to operate broadcasting stations, with the exception of a few permitted to other companies under the cross-licencing agreements, plus a small number of stations which had purchased Western Electric transmitters. The idea of radio stations broadcasting commercial messages was, however, very controversial. In the summer of 1922, there were already concerns about stations including commercial messages, as Radio: Problem Created by Advertising, from the August 13, 1922 New York Times, complained that “Many a concert or lecture has been spoiled by a station broadcasting advertising information such as the price of eggs or the bargains at some store.” In the July, 1922 issue of The Radio Dealer, a letter from AT&T Publicity Department employee J. H. Ellsworth gave AT&T’s side of the debate in Explains Broadcasting of Advertising Programming, stating that “the fear which is sometimes expressed that advertising will destroy broadcasting is seen to be without foundation”. But another Publicity Department employee, Westinghouse’s J. C. McQuiston, was more skeptical, and in his article appearing in the August, 1922 Radio News, Advertising by Radio. Can It and Should It Be Done?, a caption editorialized that “Advertising by radio cannot be done; it would ruin the radio business, for nobody would stand for it”. And a letter from Hugo Gernsback — now sixteen years removed from the days when he had introduced Telimco Wireless Outfits — proclaimed that “If the future of radio rests upon a foundation of advertising, it would be better that broadcasting did not exist at all”, according to Radio and Advertising, printed in the May 6, 1923 New York Times.
I cite as evidence the difficulty conservative newspapers have had establishing themselves. The Washington Times has never made the first dime of profit and is heavily subsidized. Also see upthread the conservative Philly newspaper that folded.
That said, witness the relative success of Fox News as an alternative to CNN and MSNBC. By all accounts, it makes a lot of money for Rupert.
Clearly there are a lot of reasons for the failure of the newspaper model, but the bias certainly did not assist their longevity. Of course our reaction here at FR is due mostly to our enjoyment in seeing our ideological enemies leaving the scene.
Absolutely! What business starts out antagonizing half its customers? The only reason they got away with it for as long as they did was because of their near-monopoly of paper information distribution.
One other point. Conventional wisdom says that the Drive-By Media was relatively unbiased until about 30 or 40 years ago. I'm not so sure about that. I opine that they've always been biased but until recent years, there was no way to counter it.
Well they may have been biased around 1960, but there were many which were biased to the right. They had a tendency to be the afternoon papers, which were read on mass transit commutes, and which were devastated by evening news broadcasts, which changed from 15 minutes of national and 15 minutes of local news, weather and sports. to the current 30 minutes and 30 to 60 minute broadcasts. Also everyone started commuting by automobile, where, hopefully, they were NOT reading the paper.
The NY Daily news was right wing, as was the Chicago Tribune, the Indianapolis News, the Phoenix Gazette, the St. Louis Globe Democrat and the Oakland Tribune, along with most Hearst papers. The NY Herald Tribune was the great standard bearer for centrist (RINO) and liberal Republicans. Almost all Florida papers, other than the Miami Herald, were conservative to far right. There were hundreds of other non-liberal papers around the country.